It was a particularly good year for Danone's Bio Activia. It moved up the rankings to third as sales rose by a whopping 81.5% to take its value to £90.1m. However, it still has a way to go to catch market leader Müller Corner, which, at £178.8m, is still double the size of Activia despite a modest 2% increase in sales.
Corner also moved further ahead of its nearest rival, stablemate Müllerlight, whose sales slipped 17.4% to £114.1m, despite being the focus of NPD and advertising activity early in the year. The low-fat brand had a revamp, including a reformulated, creamier recipe with more fruit and added probiotics, but these days overtly slimming products just don't seem to cut it.
As evidence, look at Shape, which continued to flounder, despite Danone bulking up the diet brand's offering with Lasting Satisfaction. Containing a "unique blend of effective fibres and protein" aimed at making consumers feel fuller for longer, it hit chillers in April backed by a £5m television advertising push, but it wasn't enough to shore up sales and the brand slipped nearly 16% to £31.5m.
As well as function, organic is also a clear driver. Yeo Valley Organic was eclipsed by Activia, but nevertheless grew by more than 25% with the aid of its first-ever ad campaign.
Also using ads to good effect was Onken BioPot, which got its first major activity in five years, including television commercials, following the completion of its integration with German food giant Dr Oetker. With sales up 9.4% to £31.8m, the £1.5m push was just what the doctor ordered.
Chilled desserts could do with a similar remedy. Only a handful of brands managed to make the top 20 this year, with sales of both Onken Mousse and Müllerice sliding.
Cadbury desserts are more than holding their own though, up 9.7%. Dairy Milk Mint Chips joined the twin pot range, while Buttons and Crunchie products were pulled under the Dairy Milk umbrella. n